Sunday, October 30, 2011

On How Some Things Change and Some Don't


"They say there'll never be
A girl like her again
With her socks up to her knees"

Flashback three years: A massive snow and ice storm hit Farmington. Classes were canceled, so I went to the beautiful library and read and studied. I was alone. Walking around this gorgeous building in my socks, listening to music, calling home on my cell phone. I never felt more isolated. Iceolated.

Now: A storm hit--Strange since it's just barely November. Probably a good foot on the ground, lots of trees down. The whole school is without power. The dining hall's serving food on paper plates, out of those trays catering companies use. There wasn't coffee this morning. Strong tea instead. The dorms have some power, but it takes some scavenging to find the positive outlets. We made radiator waffles last night, a huge hit on a floor of hungry girls. Creativity's needed in tight moments like this.

As I sat in a freezing classroom today, overlooking the picture-perfect lake, I began to write my essay by hand. (I've been using my laptop in 15 minute intervals to perserve battery.) How archaic--and yet it's been soothing. I needed some inspiration for my essay (a discussion of the religious elements of poetry throughout three separate eras.) So I relocated to the chapel. My absolute favorite building here. What is typically the coldest building on campus, drafty and open, was remarkably warm. I could hear the heaters creeping and cranking under the pews. I sat myself down, took off my boots, and stared down at the same fleece socks I wore when I trampled around in the library. But this time, my socks weren't my sole object of comfort. The wholeness of being here, of writing my essay in the chapel, of listening to some random preps playing piano and giggling in the front, of seeing faces in the hall, rather than desolation--all that stuff is changed from years ago. It's new. The socks, the search for comfort, not new. Just new in form--Thankfully.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Saturday Songs

Been into a warm, mellow, fall sound recently. Solid, contemplative lyrics, quality sound, the kind that makes you happy and sad at the same time. The kind that resounds in your head long after the song ends. The songs you can replay without getting bored. The lyrics you can relate to, though sometimes you wish you couldn't, for fear of being too...pensive? Not the right word. Regardless, make some cocoa, prepare for the huge snow storm (if you're in New England, I guess that's what happening now?), or just listen to this. Es magico.


"Stand watching from the steady shore
Feeling wide open and waiting for
Something warm and tender"



"Turns me inside out in a way
I can't define.
Oh I need somebody who won't see through me
Was happy living a lie."
-And it just gets better from there... 

And also:

And my new obsession:
Her voice is just...amazing.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Legs of Ice

What is this mess she harbors,
tangled up inside-
Is it a torment
Self-inflicted?
Or is it imposed
by someone else,
Someone Who,
as the night blackens,
fills heads like hers with sorrow
grief and lingering memories?
Who revels in the idea of Power--
Who cares not for the sanctity of her balanced scale?

Whose shadow is that,
Lurking around the corner,
Beckoning her to follow?
Whose shadow remains
Long after the sun has set--
Is it the ghost of a lonely lover,
She tried so hard to forget?

What song is that
Resonating in the stagnant air
Tickling her reluctant ears?
What melody still rings,
Petering above the hollow ground
In a world where all that’s left
Is the likeness of a familiar sound?

**

She decided it was time
To remove the
limited time offer sticker.
She likes to make the rules,

But doesn’t like to be the only one
Running laps around the field,

with legs cold as ice, stable as jello.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Snow

I spent my whole summer wanting to leave this cold, dark, disgusting corner of America. I thought I'd fly away and never look back. Bound for the sunny beaches of California, or the warm, southern flare of the Carolinas. Sun beckoned me. Just the thought of humid skies made my cheeks flush.

And then I walked outside tonight into a whole sky of flakeage. Crystals floating down effortlessly. Silently. And it made my night.  I realized that maybe New England has some charm. Maybe I'm not quite ready to leave.

But that decision doesn't have to be made for some time. I'm on a waiting train now. Waiting for college acceptances, new plans, newness of any sort that might give me a flutter of excitement.

While you're reading tonight, listen to my new favorite song. (or just a favorite of the week.)



Left to my own devices tonight. (Another great song by Soul Asylum. Click to listen.)

Enjoying the snow. Maybe some vanilla tea.



Until later,
Later,
TB

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

desk disorganization

my desk is cluttered with laundry detergent, a strawberry-banana smoothie, and a french press with this morning's coffee grinds. and a box of note cards, per usual.

now that the first marking period is over, a bit of stress is off.

more mental capacity to miss my friends whom I haven't seen since summer, or summers ago.

off to be busy.
pilates and maybe some gym time...if i'm ambitious.

ciao,
tb

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Article Confirming My "Plans"

Confident as I am about what I want to pursue, or plan to at this moment,
it's nice to know that other people agree.

My mom sent me this NYT article, The Rising Value of a Science Degree.
Favorite line, "Physics and poetry, anyone?"

Science and technology are so important these days. These studies provide the backbone for our economy, our philosophies, our warfare, our transportation. For practically our whole existence.
The critical nature of these subjects compels me. It motivates me. Disagreements over the safety and morality will likely yield law suits and potential policies. I want to be involved in these movements, as I know they define the future. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Rightfully Refunded

Below is a poem I've been working on recently. I wrote it one day in English class after my teacher read the poem Deer Hit by Jon Loomis and instructed us to write.
Brushed it up a bit afterwards, and here's what I came up with:



She doesn’t expect
to be repaid,
for the things she does.
They didn’t offer her
a silver platter,
or even a silver nickel.
The love she administers
isn’t contingent on
exchanges like that.

Pay and Respect
are two separate notions.
She grew accustomed to
the latter, it was all they
could give in terms
of reciprocation.
Respect.

And Smiles.
The kind that caused tiny
creases to break from the sides
of their glistening eyes.

She looked into those gems,
and before they could say
just how proud they were,
She knew.

So when he left,
when he picked up his bag,
and glanced for a moment,
so quick, an Olympic calibrated
clock couldn’t have caught it,
She was
Stunned.

A doe paralyzed by the blinding
glare of betrayal,
of lies,
of the realization that
nothing in this world can be
properly returned,
rightfully refunded.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Blue Sky Mindset

It's pouring out.
The wind's knocking leaves off the trees.
Treacherous and Disgusting. 

And yet all I see is a blue sky.
Eyes wide open,
Staring into the distance.
A Blue-Sky Kind of Hopeful.
Blinded By The Thrill Of It All.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The land of milk and honey

Drinking a mug of tea and stuffing my face with a gluten free waffle (which I topped with whipped cream and strawberries to distract from the dryness of the questionable food material. How can something be gluten, egg and dairy free? What the heck is even in it? I'm scared to look.)

I'm so thankful that we had a 4 day weekend. Got the chance to go home and stay here for more than 24 hours. Walked through my neighborhood today, in the lovely fall weather. It'd have been perfect if not for my insane allergies. Long weekends give me time to breathe, which is nice, because I love oxygen more than most other things. Except maybe coffee. Regardless of my infatuation with the hot drink (or occasionally iced), this weekend gave me a break from coffee. Only one cup each morning!

About to plug in my strand of star-lights and crank out some more college essays. Or perhaps just go to bed early and listen to the mice and critters that have found their way into my walls for the winter...eerie.


Ciao,
TB

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Pinpoint

I can't quite pinpoint when
the world shifted beneath my feet,
just slightly. 

Not enough for the Richter scale to gauge it,
so maybe no one else felt it?

But I sure did. 

It was a certain wrinkle that 
got ironed into life,
a wrinkle made permanent
by heat and pressure. 

But it's a wrinkle, 
not a stain,
like red wine on white carpet,
impossible to remove. 

We could fix it,
if we had enough muscle,
enough patience,
enough energy overall,
to push the tectonic plates
back into place.

But maybe they belong here.
In which case,
what's the use?
I guess we get used to it
and hope another quake doesn't hit
before we all adjust. 




"And there's the truth that they can't see
They'd probably like to throw a punch at me
And if you could only see them, then you would agree
Agree that there ain't no romance around there."

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Arms stretched

She stretches out
her arms around the world

To reach all she loves,
all she misses.

Those who she can't see,
but can only dream of

At night when it's dark
when the stars appear,

She reaches her arms out.
And the world reaches back.



**

Leaving pieces of her heart in every place she goes,
With the hope that someday she can go back
And collect them all.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Lbs.

Pounding the pavement,
Music thumping
through her headset as she
pounds down those keys
cranking out a paper
or three.
Pounding down iced coffee
like it's her job.






Tired out, not a miracle in days
Deciders for the lonely
Whispering tears
You try out for nothing then you drop dead
Not a miracle in years
Leisure for the lonely
Whispering unnecessary unless you're in

Die and succeed
I say it out loud but you just don't care
Farewell, til you know me well

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Saturday Songs

Opened the windows so that the wind would play with my hair,
since no one else was around. 
 It brushed my face as I searched for a song on the radio. 
Such a lovely feeling.

I've been listening to the Wallflowers lately,
pretty light rock with a twinge of country mixed in. 
 Anyway, the song One Headlight came on the radio, 
and I've never heard it on there before. Only 
in my own itunes library.

Their entire album, Bringing Down the Horse,
is like a verbalization of small town life.
The lyrics are bittersweet. 
The melody is slow, like those disheartening moments
when you wave at the kid on the corner,
who you knew once,
before your connection faded.

They capture that frustration,
the need to light the town on fire,
just so something will happen. Something worthwhile.
I've been pretty busy lately, keeping up with school, 
college apps, life in general. It takes a lot to slow me down,
but coming home does the trick. 

I won't have time this weekend to go to our town's 
annual Fall Festival, but I remember the days when
that was the highlight of my whole year.
Driving by the large, painted signs at the center of town
brings me back to those days when I wasn't aware
of the world beyond my town lines, beyond
bicycle-riding distance. 

The days when winning goldfish in a carnival game
felt like winning the lottery.

When roast-beef sandwiches and pie by the pond filled
every craving I could imagine.

When we bought tiny poppers and threw them at one another,
just to get a laugh.

When I asked my parents if I could by a fake cigarette 
from the cheap-toy vendor. When they said no.

When we ran around in the mud until late at night, 
jumping fences and chasing geese through the fields.

When we traded marbles and stories 
and climbed trees and hid in hay bales.

And now, I'm sitting at home eating black beans 
and studying Greek sculptures and architecture. 
Quiz on Monday. Big stuff...
Working some shifts
at the restaurant this weekend. 
My oddly shaped feet aren't thanking me,
because I wore bad sneakers. 

Oh well. 

Enjoy the Wallflowers.
Enjoy the weekend.

This invisible city
Where no one sees nothing
We're touching faces in the dark
Feelin' pretty is so hard

 

Friday, October 7, 2011

Time of Day

That pink-cheeked child,
who used to feed
the Chickadees,
futilely,
in the snowy back yard,

She grew up.

She doesn't give the time of day out any more--
except to those who promise to listen.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

She swings

She swings like a pendulum between two worlds. In one, bored kids get married or go to war. In the other, professors sip peppermint tea and discuss the social complexities of an American life. And through the beauty of her positioning, she has discovered valuable lessons in both.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Paul Simon to brighten the day

It's far too grey. Listen to a little Paul. Smile.


Rain at Midnight

It came suddenly
pouring out of the sky.
No stars tonight.
Nothing to see when you look up
but buckets of chilly water

I know I should close my windows
lest everything get soaked.

But to let go of that sound
those tiny splashes
on my sill

that'd be a shame
a crying shame.

Monday, October 3, 2011

On running and writing

The trees whizzed by my unconcerned eyes. Parents played with their infants on blankets by the river. Tattooed young British couples snogged in the bushes. Teens on skateboards smoked cigarettes and did kick-flips. Clad in my painfully American spandex athletic clothes, I sprinted around Cambridge in desperate search of the race-track. A three mile minimum became the norm, with stairs or sprints mixed in. My favorite path took me through a field of brown bulls. Bulls on the outskirts of a city, just soaking up the sunshine and minding their own business. I envied them, though I knew I’d be bored sitting so painfully still. Flicking flies off my back with my long, wiry tail.

Metallic music blared from my headset. These runs felt like a downward spiral into oblivion. Heat, rain, social obligation, nothing stopped me. I felt lighter when the sun hit my skin, when I breathed in deeply, my lungs begging for air. When I was fast.

As I saw it, I had two options. Running or writing. As soon as I sat down, my ink would begin to flow or my fingers would rapidly strike my keys. I didn’t have a cap to put on that pen. There was no cork to plug the holes of my heart and mind. It just kept flowing and it scared me and this is what I got. . .

An organized disaster

Keeps these on hand in case it all falls out of control again. She knows the order can be restored. She’s got the code written on the back of her hand.


 
Maybe she wants it so she can float,
Glide with grace, on the face of her Mother Earth,
Down every street, through each field
Just float
w e i g h t l e s s l y

a patchwork of her
thoughts and dreams
it's not nearly as
complex as it may seem
though if she were to lose
these pieces of her mind
her confidence and sanity
would be quite difficult to find.


Saturday, October 1, 2011

Saturday Songs


My top play for the day.

A quiet sort of Saturday. The tree outside my window has exploded into a deep shade of red. The air smells like fall, finally. 

In addition to that wonderful Cage the Elephant song, enjoy these smiles as well. I bought a bag of Smiley French Fries to feed to the girls on my hall. They thoroughly enjoyed the carbs, and got a kick out of this ridiculous food. How can you not smile when looking at these... I mean, seriously. It's a potato shaped like a face. It doesn't get much more creative than that.

Ciao, 
TB
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